Oxford Policy Engagement Network Showcase: What do policymakers really want from researchers, and what can researchers hope to achieve by engaging with them?

Geography isn’t just about understanding the world, but about changing it for the better, too. At the School of Geography, many of our researchers engage with the policymaking community in local, national and international contexts. But what do policymakers really want from us? And what can we hope to achieve by engaging with them?

To explore these questions, why not join an informal online discussion from 12.00 to 13.00 p.m. on 5 July with Professor Heather Viles, Associate Head of the Social Sciences Division, and three of our researchers who have secured Oxford Policy Engagement Network (OPEN) Fellowships:

Dr Alison Smith, who won an OPEN Fellowship to work with Oxfordshire County Council and Cherwell District Council to quantify and map the ‘natural capital’ value of all land in the county, to inform development of the Oxford-to-Cambridge Growth Arc;

Dr Ariell Ahearn, whose OPEN Fellowship enabled collaboration with government ministries in Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan to strengthen co-ordination between them in managing the rapid expansion of artisanal and large-scale mining; and

Dr Neven Fučkar, whose current OPEN Fellowship involves working with the Climate Change and Health Group at Public Health England to develop and implement user-oriented metrics relevant for public health policy on adaptation and resilience building in current and future climate.

Dr Jasper Montana, one of the five 2021 OPEN Leaders will draw from his recent experience and close the session with his reflections.